Banks Allows Girls Soccer Home Playoff Game After Public Pressure Over Game Relocation

Banks — It just goes to show that putting pressure on leaders can bring equitable results. On Wednesday, the athletic department at Banks was the subject of social media backlash, media inquiry, and email dissent from the community after it was learned that the girls soccer program would have their home playoff game moved to an alternate site, effectively numbing any home playoff advantage that the Lady Braves obtained in the first round of the 3A/2A/1A playoffs. A pair of sources told Elite Oregon Girls the reason was that junior varsity and varsity football have games scheduled in the upcoming week, and that the field needed to be preserved for those games. This drew backlash from members of the Banks community, who argued that it was unreasonable and inequitable to move a soccer playoff game for the sake of accommodating football.

Many within the Banks community chimed in on the situation over social media:

  • “Denying these girls their home field for their first playoff game is absolutely ridiculous and counter to the Brave Experience our schools are striving for. Anything but Kelly Field is unacceptable.”
  • “These girls always play their best at Kelly! They worked hard to earn that home field advantage spot. This town will pack the stands and our school even has the ability to broadcast.”
  • “Pack the house 💛💙⚽️ These ladies fought and earned home field advantage for state playoffs. All sports must be treated on the basis of equality- Pierre De Coubertin.”
  • “This shouldn’t be a question on where they will play. They need home field advantage as we’re to host this game. Could you imagine hosting family and friends for a celebration and instead of being in your home it’s in your neighbors shed?”
  • “Because a JV game is more important than a Varsity playoff game?!?! mind-blown and totally unacceptable!”
  • “That is insane. This is a state tournament. Why is this not more important than a JV football game? Move the JV game if the field is “unplayable”! Completely bogus.”

After a few hours of backlash on the issue, Banks gave in on the situation and ultimately penciled in the game for a 2 PM kickoff at Kelly Field against Riverside. Out of nine home games this season, Banks has been moved four times to an alternate site, where the Lady Braves posted a 1-3 record. By comparison, Banks is 2-1-1 when playing at Kelly Field, with Saturday’s first round game against Riverside serving as their fifth game on their home field. A request to Banks Athletic Director Ben Buchanan for clarification and explanation on the issue went unreturned.

2 Comments

  1. That the boys JV regular season game took precedence over the girls V playoff match, if true, both comically underscores the unfortunate struggles of soccer to compete with American football in the U.S. and baldly exemplifies the systemic misogyny of our institutions. It appears the right decision was eventually made. This is welcome news, and hopefully an opportunity for the athletics department to review how they recognize and constructively address implicit and explicit biases.

    Like

    1. Unfortunately this is a pattern within the Banks School District where football is king and girls sports are an afterthought.
      Apparently it will take a title IX lawsuit to smarten them up.

      Like

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